Cavaliers to interview Timberwolves assistant Micah Nori for head coaching vacancy, AP source says

CLEVELAND (AP) — The Cavaliers will interview Timberwolves assistant Micah Nori for their head coaching vacancy — the fifth known candidate in Cleveland's search — in the next few days, a person familiar with the meeting told The Associated Press on Monday.

A long-time NBA assistant, Nori assumed bench duties during the playoffs when Minnesota coach Chris Finch suffered a knee injury and had limited mobility.

Nori joins a list of candidates in Cleveland that will continue to grow, said the person who spoke on condition of anonymity because the team is not commenting during the search to find J.B. Bickerstaff's replacement. was first to report the Cavs' interest in Nori.

Bickerstaff was fired one week after the Cavs' postseason ended with a second-round loss to Boston. The Cavs respected the job Bickerstaff did, but feel a new voice is necessary to take the team further.

Cleveland improved each season under Bickerstaff, and the Cavs were among the Eastern Conference's top teams all season despite numerous injuries. They won a seven-game series over Orlando in the firs round.

Nori has been on Minnesota's staff since 2021. He's also worked with Toronto, Sacramento, Denver and Detroit.

With the Timberwolves, he's been the equivalent of a bench coach in baseball, serving as Finch’s top advisor while helping manage the rest of the staff. Nori previously worked with Finch in Denver.

The 50-year-old Nori is an Ohio native. His warm personality has endeared him to colleagues and players and it wasn't unusual for Nori to use a funny analogy during TV sideline interviews to keep the mood light.

Last week, the Cavs opened their search by receiving permission to speak with Golden State assistant Kenny Atkinson, New Orleans assistant James Borrego, New York assistant Johnnie Bryant and Miami assistant Chris Quinn.

Both Atkinson and Borrego are former head coaches. Bryant is an interesting candidate because of his relationship with Cavs All-Star guard Donovan Mitchell, who is eligible to sign a long-term contract extension with Cleveland this summer.

Bryant and Mitchell worked together in Utah.

Cavs president of basketball operations Koby Altman stressed the team would be methodical in finding a new coach. Ideally, he would like to have the coach in place for the NBA draft on June 26, but hinted it could take longer.


This story has been corrected to show that Nori is 50, not 40.